She sat braiding her hair. In the morning light the strands shone rusty brown. The young woman’s agile fingers weaved in and around each other, but her mind was elsewhere. She remembered gathering chestnuts last fall, and the man who had offered to buy her basket.
“But, my lord! This is gold.”
“I am no one’s lord,” said the man. “And the real gold is what you carry.”
The Artist Who Didn’t Like Silhouettes (166 Words)
It was a shame, because she specialized in them. She knew how to find that symmetry, that poise, that would bring out the art in any figure. But she told me one time when I was with her in her studio, that she didn’t like them. At the time she was working on the silhouette of a bird poised on a winter branch, a jagged, India-ink blackness over gray Bristol.
“But why not?” I said. “They’re wonderful.”
“Well,” she said. “I’ve been thinking. You know what they say about looking at things in black and white.”
Once, a goblin stole whatever he could from a human village, jewels, apples, and buttons. He was lean-limbed with fierce gold eyes, but his hands, though slender, were like talons.
His one weakness was a human woman. When their love became known, the village threatened her if he did not surrender himself. He surrendered. I can’t tell you how many different ways they tried to kill him, but nothing harmed him. So they buried him alive. Some say these gnarly roots evoke the goblin’s reaching hands, clawing for escape.
This was not a normal baby bird. For one thing, it was evil. It stared at Susan with evil beady black eyes, its head undulating and its mouth open wide. There was something malevolent in the way that baby bird kept its mouth wide open. Susan sat very still as the baby bird sat on her lap. She could feel its eyes boring into her, but she was watching Tommy.
Tommy was mixing dog and baby food into Tupperware.
“What’s that for?” asked Susan.
“Food,” said Tommy. “Baby birds can eat moist food. It’ll need hot water to make it soft.”